Update for Award Year Students in Design & Visual Arts and Film & Media
Following recent announcements by the Minister for Higher Education and the whole of sector commitment to progress and graduate students through alternative modes of assessment. I am now writing to provide clarity in respect of the necessary changes for Award Year students in your respective Departments.
Firstly, it is important – as your former Head of Faculty and as a practising designer – to state that my own private and professional disappointment that we have had to make such drastic changes and exceptional adjustments due to the impact of this crisis. Everything we know and value within practice-based education has had to be radically reworked to support you all towards successful completion of this Academic year.
Since the beginning of this crisis, all of us have held out some hope for an early return and some additional flexibility to allow you to complete during this summer. I made numerous representations, to the Department of Education and Skills, in respect of impacts and challenges faced by staff & students in "Art & Design" in having to adapt to newly imposed measures. While there is an acknowledgement of the unprecedented challenges award year students may face, your continued health and well-being have been the primary factor in decisions made nationally.
The purpose of your final assessment remains consistent – the same as last year and every previous year. Assessment is intended to enable you, our learners, to demonstrate what you have learned, and that you have met your programme’s learning outcomes. This remains the case for all of you, with the exception that we do so by a method possible under the current health restrictions. The final submission deadline for all award years in your Departments is now June 4th, 2020.
My engagement with colleagues in schools of Art & Design confirms that all programmes nationally have adopted, or are in the process of adopting, an alternative mode of assessment for their Award Years.
Discussions with these schools also confirmed that all Graduate Exhibitions for May/June 2020 have been postponed or cancelled. A decision IADT has also had to make in postponing our Graduate Showcase. This is hugely disappointing for us all. Our annual exhibition is the highlight of the year. A single day that encapsulates the very best of IADT and celebrates your achievements. I understand how hugely disappointed you will be with this decision.
Therefore, we are committed to a professional and public showcase to celebrate the Graduate Class of 2020 later this year. Such an event can only happen once the public health emergency is over and all restrictions are lifted.
Additionally, we are planning to develop an extensive online platform to showcase and celebrate your work. This will be supported by a targeted marketing and communications programme throughout the summer.
Below you will find information and resources that will help clarify and guide you through these changes. As always, your programme lecturer's, IADT support staff and your student's union are available to advise you on any matters of concern. I advise you to take some time and review all of the information provided to you today.
It is IADTs strongest desire and intent, in all of the provisions that are being made for alternative assessment methodologies, that no student is disadvantaged by the changes necessitated by the COVID-19 outbreak. Please refer to the Statement on Exams included here and be assured that no student will face academic or financial penalties if they cannot conclude their studies at this time.
Finally, I acknowledge that the decisions imposed upon on all of us are upsetting and disruptive for you at such a critical stage of your studies. Yet it is important to remember the talent, commitment and determination that has brought you to this point – a final hurdle – after a four-year journey. You have proven that you are ready and prepared to make this final step. I know that your lecturers have immense confidence in your ability to adapt and respond to these changes. I know that your talent, ingenuity and resilience will see you all succeed.
With my continued support and commitment to you.
Award Year Students Information Page